Opaheke Sportsfields, Papakura

Auckland Council’s Sports Field Capacity Development Programme aims to “increase the number of Council sportsfields that are usable throughout the year, from 80{99bedb9ffb067ae5ebda2e49a92eccf670ea4d27893b65d595be72f415a9e712} to 90{99bedb9ffb067ae5ebda2e49a92eccf670ea4d27893b65d595be72f415a9e712} by 2020”, with some 69 new sports fields being required to cater for Auckland’s growth as well as allow refurbishment of “tired” grounds.  The Opaheke Sportsfields Project is a vital part of this programme and will initially be used as  “transfer fields” in the Papakura/Drury area enabling other parks to be temporarily closed and upgraded sequentially, with playing activity transferred to  Opaheke during this process.

Main features:

  • Eight new fields
  • Improved (widened) access from Opaheke Road
  • Metalled access road and car parking, changing facility, dual buspark/basketball court and playground
  • Groundwater bore water supply
  • Stormwater—wetland treatment of access road/carpark runoff
  • Wastewater – on-site wastewater treatment and disposal
  • Extensive landscaping
  • Provision for future field lighting.

Fraser Thomas were engaged by Auckland Council to design, consent and project manage the construction of these new sportsfields.   This utilised our surveying, geotechnical, civil and environmental engineering and contaminated land expertise, in combination with specialist external planners, arborists, landscape architects, sports turf advisors and traffic engineers.

Design, Consenting and Tendering:

Design, Consenting and Tendering were fast tracked over 4 months, with an integrated resource consent obtained for the site, detailed design and tendering completed, so that physical works could begin.  Council were very appreciative of these efforts as they knew they had set an ambitious timeline.



Construction was completed in March 2015, being hampered by large amount of unsuitable materials being encountered during physical works, particularly in a historical gully feature, and sudden seasonal weather changes, going from the ground being too wet to undertake final leveling to too dry to sow grass within a matter of weeks.  Fraser Thomas are currently engaged in tendering and construction observation of the groundwater bore supply and distribution/irrigation systems.

“It is praise in deed and a project we can all be proud of.  A big thank you from me as we could not have done it without the commitment and devotion (at times difficult) from Fraser Thomas, to the project from the outset. The company’s attention to detail is certainly reflected in this stage of the completed works which I know is going to mature into a facility the Papakura community and Local Board will be extremely proud of.” (ACPSR Project Manager)

Expertise provided:

  • Geotechnical
  • Environmental
  • Civil
  • Resource management planning
  • Surveying
  • Project management
  • Sub-consultants:

– Planner
– Arborist
– Landscape architects
– Sports turf advisors
– Traffic engineers

Project cycle:

  • Investigations
  • Preliminary design
  • Consenting
  • Detailed design
  • Tendering
  • Construction observation
  • Completion certification